stream of consciousness. and stream of photos.

Oh, hey there. It’s been awhile.

So I’m not a fan of the word busy. And I’m really not a fan of people saying they’re soooooo busy. But dang it, you guys. We’ve kinda been soooooo busy around here (I just rolled my eyes at myself while I typed that. Ha.).

I feel like I could write and write and write. But the kids are already asleep and I have a fresh pint of Phish Food waiting for me in the freezer and 10 more episodes of OITNB waiting for me on Netflix–so a quick recap will have to do for tonight.

I’ll get back into the swing of this writing thing sooner or later.

. . .

A few months ago my girlfriends and I started our own property renovation and rental company. It’s something we’ve been talking about doing for a really long time–and this spring the stars aligned for us. It’s been so much fun–and so much work.

We’re renovating the cutest little old house right across the street from Southside School. We’ve been working our tails off for two months–ripping up carpet and tearing down wallpaper and mudding and sanding and painting and painting and painting some more. It’s really, truly been a labor of love.

Here’s a little sneak peek. Isn’t she lovely?!


the drawer handles are sitting on top of the counter. waiting patiently for us to get our acts together.

and this white statuary hexagon tile. just as beautiful as the lavender and lily of the valley growing in her side yard.

We named our first house Southside Sally–and she’s *almost* done. She has a new kitchen and a new bathroom– and we managed to preserve all her original 1920’s charm. We’re just so in love with her. She’s going on the market next week if you know anyone who would love her as much as we do.

. . .

School’s out for the summer. Here’s our last day of preschool photo, 2016.

And my oldest had his kindergarten assessment that very same week. Look at this kid. I hope he’s always this excited about school.

I’m soaking in every single minute of my last summer with two babies. We took turns writing out our summer bucket list.

And so far, so good. We’re nailing it.

Actually we lost the actual list. But my kids have good memories. Boom

. . .

We made it through our first season of T Ball. Phew.


our socks never match. never ever.

My kids are way too young and disorganized for organized sports. But we did our best. And the snacks at the end of all the practices and games made it all worthwhile. There’s nothing better than a bag of mini Oreos paired with an ice-cold Hi-C Flashin’ Fruit Punch. Am I right? Yessss.

And now we’re crying our way through our first season of “swim team”. But I’m bribing them with Cocomero on the regular.

So we’re going to be just fine. Mother of the Year, indeed.

Hey, at least they love their new goggles.

photo creds: our favorite maddie

. . .

Four words.

Hot. Mustard. Is. Back.

Hot Mustard + Sweet and Sour + Nuggets = Nirvana.

Sometimes I want to drink it out of the little container after I finish dipping my nuggets. If you love it like I love it, you feel me. Yum. Enough said.

. . .
Is anyone else watching O.J. Made in America?

You should be. I burned through all five episodes of this ESPN documentary last weekend like it was nothing. So good. And so sad. And still so relevant.

We’re on to Orange is the New Black now–also so good–but you already knew that.

. . .

OK, I’m ready to call it a night. I’ll be on WCIA Current again tomorrow at 9am discussing this post. And no, I won’t be wearing a swimsuit. Ha. See you there then, ok?

watermelon strawberry pops.

My kids were up at 5:30am this morning.

oh hey, neighbors. up and at ’em.

Partially because the sun was up–and bright. And partially because we made watermelon strawberry pops last night before bed and I told them they could each have one when they woke up.

So rise and shine, Mom.

I got the idea for these easy, healthy treats from my girlfriend Kate’s Instagram account. Check her out over at She Loves the F Word for some fashion, food and fitness fun.

These popsicles are easy and healthy. And made with two (or three) ingredients. They’re Whole30 and Paleo–and kid approved. And so yum.

Watermelon Strawberry Pops

  • half a watermelon–sliced
  • 1 lb strawberries–cut off the green tops
  • juice of a lime–optional but I love it for a little sour twist

Blend all your ingredients in a blender or food processor.

Pour into Popsicle molds.

Freeze for at least 6 hours–or until the crack of dawn. Ha.


on loving yourself. even in a swimsuit.

So this week I got in the pool. 

. . . 

Yesterday morning when I was running around frantically packing the pool bag before swim lessons Johnny grabbed my hand and stopped me in my tracks.

Why don’t you ever swim with us in the big pool, mom? 

Good question, sweet child of mine. Good question. 

In my head I have a million reasons. 

Because I need to shave my legs. Because my boobs are a 36L, as in long. Because I can’t find a good one-piece swimsuit made for a tall person so I wear a two-piece–and I really shouldn’t wear a two-piece. Because everyone will see I have stretch marks and a mom pooch and my butt is bigger than it used to be. 

Oh Angie, stop. Please stop.

I didn’t say any of that. I told him I didn’t know he wanted me to swim with them in the big pool. 

And I put my swimsuit on. 

. . .

I don’t love myself as much as I should. And I worry way too much about what other people think or say–or rather what I *think* they are thinking or saying. 

It’s just who I am and how my brain works. And you don’t have to beat me up about it. I already beat myself up about it all the time–and then I beat myself up for beating myself up. Ugh.

But I don’t think I’m alone. Actually I know I’m not.

I’ve nodded my head along to all those articles about how moms should just put on their swimsuits and get in the pool or the game or the picture or whatever–we all have. Because it’s easy to nod your head and shout YES while you’re reading those articles. But it’s a whole other kind of hard to put your money where your mouth is–or your swimsuit over your long boobs–and dive in.

I’m not going to tell you to put on your bikini and get in the water with me. I’m not going to tell you what you’re missing by sitting on the sidelines or staying out of the picture. You’ve already read enough articles like that–and you know. 

I am going to tell you I get it. I feel you. I do. Sometimes diving in is just too hard.

I think we could all be a little easier on ourselves–a little kinder to ourselves. We could try a little harder to love ourselves like we love our people. We could all try a little harder to replace some of our negative self-talk with some positive. 

And we can stop beating ourselves up for beating ourselves up. One round of that shit is tough enough. Right? Right.

I think I can handle that. And you probably could too.

. . .

So this week I got in the pool. Damn it.

My kids were happy–and I was happy. And nobody thought or said anything about anything. Not a thing.

How about that. 

Oh and that negative self-talk? It was still there–I’m not going to tell you it stopped with one quick dip. Ha. But I heard less and less of it with every splash.

Happy Summer, friends. I’m working on loving myself as much as I love these guys–and all of you. XOXO.

This pic is an oldie. From two years ago, actually. I know, I know–I’m working on being the mom who stays in the picture too.

A Father’s Day Gift Idea. With J Hilburn.

Father’s Day is two weeks from today. Need a gift idea? We have you covered.

Our pops has always been a sharp dresser. But last year he came home with some new shirts that took his sharp dressing game to a whole new level.


He’d met with J Hilburn personal wardrobe stylist extraordinaire Sara Seed a few weeks prior–and she hooked him up. Look how handsome he looks in his J Hilburn shirt!


Sara Seed just happens to be one of my favorite high school teachers–if you’re a townie I’m sure she was one of your favorites too. And now she’s a personal wardrobe stylist with J Hilburn. She meets her clients at their convenience (at no charge and with no obligation) to set up a unique measurement profile and help create clothing that is fit and styled exclusively for them.


J Hilburn delivers quality custom clothing and personal styling services at a price that won’t break the bank. They offer exclusive Italian shirting and trouser fabrics, luxury performance knits and a top-shelf accessories line that marries the best in handmade designs and European quality. Each of their garments is crafted from fabrics that have been carefully selected from some of the finest mills in the world (more often than not, the mill is Italian).


Their custom shirts are my favorite–they are beautiful and unique–and a perfect Father’s Day gift for our pops and yours. This shirt of Danny’s was cut on the bias with a split yoke on the back–so sharp, right? You can even have the shirts embroidered with anything you’d like–dad’s initials, kids’ initials or even I Love Dad.


And would you look at all their fabric choices?! Something for everyone. Boom.


I invited Sara over last weekend to show you how quick and easy it is to set up a unique measurement profile. Even with my two little “helpers” running around she was in and out of our house in less than 30 minutes. Check it.



Why, yes–of course they are tying each other up with Sara’s measuring tapes.


Along with her measuring tapes (she measures 16 different points)–Sara brings her big book of choices–all the fun stuff to customize your look.


One more thing–Sara and J Hilburn can make a dress shirt (or any other garment or accessory for that matter) for dad AND mom–or anyone who loves beautiful, unique clothing that fits perfectly. Because–guy or gal–who doesn’t love a crisp dress shirt? So fly.

Here’s Sara’s website Check her out. You can give her a call today–217-898-5495. Or shoot her an e-mail at Tell her I sent you. And if you think her job sounds like fun–it does, right?–let her know that too. She’s always looking for new stylists to join her J Hilburn styling team.

Thanks for coming to play, Sara. Danny loves his new special shirts. And Happy (early) Father’s Day to all the papas (and the mamas who serve as both the mamas and papas) out there. XOXO.

banana mango coconut milk freeze.

Summer is here! And hot days call for cold treats.

This banana mango coconut milk freeze is a summertime favorite of ours. It’s easy to make–and healthy. And you can whip it up in less than 5 minutes. Yum.

You could substitute any frozen fruit for mango–we’ve used pineapple (my favorite!),  strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, peaches and papaya–whatever you have on hand–they’re all good.

Make a big batch and keep it in your freezer for a sweet treat.


Banana Mango Coconut Milk Freeze 

  • 2 frozen bananas
  • 1 cup frozen mango
  • 1/2 cup coconut cream (the fat from the top of the refrigerated can)

Combine all the ingredients in your food processor.


Pulse until creamy and blended.



Dig in!


And these cut-off shirts from Nanny?! They love them, so I love them. Suns out, guns out. Boom.

paleo soft and chewy double chocolate cookies. and the cutest apron.

We’ve been celebrating World Baking Day all week over here. Strawberry Banana Coconut Muffins, a rhubarb pie (from scratch, never again) and these PaleOMG’s Soft & Chewy Double Chocolate Cookies.


The cookies took the cake. They were good. So good.

And how cute is this little apron?


The kid on my hip is pretty cute too.

I have a thing for aprons. I’ve amassed quite a collection–a whole drawer full of them actually. This apron–a coffee shop design (allllll the caffeine. she knows me too well)–came from my girlfriend Alexandra at Altruist Aprons. Alex is a crafting and sewing queen and an animal lover. She really, truly has the biggest heart–she gets it from her mama who is one of my favorites too.

Alexandra sews all her aprons (and pillows!) by hand, made to order. Check her out. And treat yourself to one of her sweet little creations (this blue floral vintage apron has your name all over it, don’t you think?). Oh and you can spice up your kitchen look and help fight animal cruelty at the same time. Alexandra donates $2 from each of her handmade apron sales to Animal Equality International, a non-profit organization that aims to defend all animals through public education, campaigns and investigations. So win, win.

. . .

Here’s the recipe for those PaleOMG’s Soft and Chewy Double Chocolate Cookies. Enjoy.

  • 1 cup thick almond butter (Make sure it’s not too oily or the cookies won’t come together. A few of our cookies kinda fell apart, this is why. They were still delish.)
  • 1 cup coconut sugar
  • 1 egg, whisked
  • ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup Enjoy Life Mini Chocolate Chips

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. In a large bowl, mix almond butter and coconut sugar. Johnny was begging to use the “mixing gun”. image.jpegDon’t do it. It made a huge mess. Just use a spatula. Then add the egg and stir again until well combined.

3. Add ¼ cup of cocoa powder at a time. I used my hands to knead the cocoa powder into the dough. Add all the cocoa powder and knead completely.

4. Add baking soda, vanilla, salt and chocolate chips and knead until everything is well mixed. It’s messy, but eh. (Your dough should be a very thick. If it’s not, you need a thicker almond butter).

5. Scoop out 2 tablespoons of dough at a time and form into round balls. Place them on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. I had enough dough for about 14 cookies.

6. Once you’ve placed all your cookie balls onto your baking sheet, use a fork to press the cookies down just slightly.image.jpeg Don’t flatten them, just get them to look more like cookies than balls. If you press them down too much, they’ll come apart when they bake so be careful–this happened to some of mine. Again, eh.

7. Bake for 10 minutes.

8. Remove from oven and let cool for 10 minutes before removing cookies from baking sheet to place on cooling rack. If you try to remove these from the baking sheet too soon, they’ll fall apart. You were warned.


Ours went straight from our baking sheet to our mouths. And I didn’t Maggie Hockenberry them either. I ate four, maybe five. And then I answered the door and had a long conversation with the Fed Ex man with teeth covered in double-chocolate cookies. Nice work, Hat.